An investigation of the role acceptor side chains play in the processibility and efficiency of organic solar cells fabricated from small molecular donors featuring 3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene cores

Natalie Mica, S. A. J. Almahmoud, Lethy Krishnan Jagadamma, G. Cooke, Ifor David William Samuel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
3 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Organic photovoltaic devices fabricated from small molecular donors continue to receive significant interest due to their desirable properties such as convenient synthesis, purification and batch-to-batch reproducibility. In this study, we have synthesized two small molecules based on an alternating A-D-A structure, utilizing a central EDOT donor moiety and either 2-ethylhexyl cyanoacetate (SAM-80) or N-(2-ethylhexyl)cyanoacetamide (SAM-72) units as acceptor termini. The small molecules were incorporated into bulk heterojunction solar cells with PC71BM. Our investigations have shown that the side chains utilized for SAM-80 only allow for solution processing using volatile solvents, such as chloroform, which limits the reproducibility of device fabrication. However, SAM-72 displays better solubility and devices fabricated using a SAM-72:PC71BM active layer reached average power conversion efficiencies of 1.9%, with fill factors reaching 60%. Post-processing methods such as thermal and solvent vapor annealing were found to significantly increase the stability of devices, but were not able to improve overall device performance.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39231–39240
Number of pages10
JournalRSC Advances
Volume8
Issue number69
Early online date23 Nov 2018
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 Nov 2018

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